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Yoga and Body Awareness

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Old 12-18-2005, 05:50 PM   #1
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Default Yoga and Body Awareness

I've said it before and I'll say it again: Yoga, Dancing, Pilates, etc never seemed to work for me for weight loss but they gave me an acute awareness of my body that made me pay more attention to losing weight, eating right and feeling strong. Now, it looks like the scientific community has caught up with me!

This is from the latest Fitness Magazine (edited version):

Overweight yoga practitioners who did hatha 30 minutes a week for at least four years lost an average of five pounds over a ten-year period. Overweight non-yogis gained about 14 pounds in the same span. Researchers speculate it is not related to calories burned but its mindful quality increases body awareness which means you'll be more likely to make healthy food choices and stick to your exercise routine.
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Old 12-18-2005, 08:30 PM   #2
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I was wondering how often you do it? What is a good tape for a very overweight out of shape beginner?
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Old 12-19-2005, 08:51 AM   #3
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I was just thinking the same thing....hoping that Yogini sees this thread. I remember her saying that she teaches a plus sized yoga class.
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Old 12-19-2005, 09:08 AM   #4
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Okay -- this made me laugh. I DO completely agree that yoga brings about a self-awareness that helps with weightloss. It just cracks me up when a study has a figure like "lost 5 lbs. in 10 years". Now, I so would not be happy with those results (although that's about how slowly I feel I am progressing
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Old 12-19-2005, 09:59 AM   #5
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Just to chime in, I started doing yoga in July. I was looking for increased flexibility (I had none) and more muscle tone. I've definately gotten both! The increased flexibility, I can touch my toes for the first time since my teens and my shoulder/arms are getting there!

It does also give you an increase in body awareness and an overall awareness of what you're eating. You can't spend too much time inverted if you've just eaten a Big Mac, you'll really get sick.

I think it's a great add-on to cardio and resistance training, I try to do it at least 2x/week.
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Old 12-20-2005, 03:12 AM   #6
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Sandi, to answer your question, not as often as I should be! In my prime, I did 30 minutes 5xs a week. But now I do it about 30 minutes a week - a sun salutation set every morning for about 5 minutes. I don't recommend videos. I HAVE yoga videos but I don't recommend them unless you've had a class. An instructor can see so much that you can't see. Until I felt comfortable with the poses and understood what alignment I needed to feel when I was doing those poses, a video did not do me any good.

My biggest advice is that yoga is internal. When you go to a class, they are all going to be skinny (unless you happen to live in Yogini's area). Don't worry about it. There will be poses that you do and you'll sweat like a pig and wonder, "How can I be sweating like a pig? I'm hardly doing anything." And you'll be embarrassed. Get over it. No one is watching you. I swear!

And Paula! You're right, 5 pounds is not much. But 14 pounds is a heck of a lot to gain.
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Old 12-20-2005, 03:49 AM   #7
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Thanks for posting this, one of my New Years resolutions is to start learning yoga. I thought it would sit really well with the work I am currently doing in the gym. There is a big expo in April in Manchester, so I am going to go to that and do lots research and decide where to go!

I've long ceased worrying about being the fattest person anywhere! I was enormous at the pool and the gym, but I have stopped being the fattest person at either, not just because I have lost weight, but because other people who are bigger than me have been inspired to start exercising.
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